MI decided to bowl first after winning the toss. McClenaghan, who was in for Lewis, and Krunal Pandya opened the bowling attack with precision giving just 5 runs in first two overs. McClenaghan went for 10 in his second over, while Malinga conceded 13 runs in the fourth. The powerplay was fruitless for MI with 49 on the board, but right after that, Hardik removed Shubman Gill with a slower one. He got the second success as de Kock grabbed Lynn’s catch and to restrict KKR to 61 after 10 overs. McClenaghan’s 11th over was a maiden one, while Malinga demolished KKR by striking twice in the 13th over, grabbing the big scalps of Karthik and Russell. Hardik conceded 16 runs in the 15th over but KKR were yet to cross 100. Malinga got his third wicket in the 18th over and avenged Nitish Rana’s sixer in the previous ball. Bumrah bowled exceptional 20th over, giving just 3 runs and taking two wickets off the last two balls, restricting KKR to 133.
MI openers started the humble run chase calmly, with 18 runs in first 3 overs. Sharma hit a four to Russell to begin the fourth over while de Kock wrecked Russell’s remaining over with a couple of sixes and a four. At the end of the powerplay, MI posted 46 without a wicket. Q de Kock got out to Prasidh Krishna the first ball of the seventh over, but Sharma continued the run chase with Suryakumar Yadav, and after 10 overs they needed only 58 runs. MI added another 45 runs in next five overs and eventually, MI sealed the match with 23 balls to spare with Yadav hitting a six off Russell.
Rohit Sharma’s 55 in 48 balls will boost his and the team’s confidence prior to the big match against CSK. Yadav scored 27 balls 46. Malinga took 3 wickets for 35, Hardik bagged 2 for just 20 runs. The MI bowlers produced 60 dot balls.
KKR had to win this game to reach the playoffs and they would have preferred the run chase had they won the toss. After a dull start, Lynn hit the first six to McClenaghan to end the 3rd over. He then took charge against Veteran Malinga with a boundary and a six. With two sixes in the 6th over, KKR concluded the powerplay blissfully. But both the openers surrendered their wickets to Hardik in 7th and 9th overs. KKR managed only 12 runs in 7-10 overs. They were devastated when Karthik and Russell got out to Malinga in the same over at the score of 73. Uthappa and Rana played some shots and accelerated the inning’s pace with 26 runs in the next two overs. Their 47 runs partnership was ended by Malinga in the 18th over, as Rana was gone. They could fetch just 7 runs in the penultimate over and only 3 off Bumrah’s last over, as Uthappa and Rinku Singh got out of the last two balls.
It was a difficult task for bowlers to defend a modest total of 133 runs. Sandeep Warrier was hit for a six on the third ball by de Kock but Gurney’s second over was a tight one with just 4 runs. KKR’s problem started to resurface with Russell’s fourth over in which the MI openers fetched 21 runs. Narine bowled exceptional 6th over to restrict MI below 50. Their first success came in the 7th over as Prasidh could remove de Kock thanks to an excellent diving catch by Karthik. But it was too little and too less for KKR. The required run rate after 10 overs started decreasing as none of their bowlers could break Sharma and Yadav’s partnership. With Yadav’s six in the 16th over, KKR were knocked out of the tournament.
Lynn’s inning of 41 runs off 29 balls was the highlight of the KKR’s batting. He was well supported by Shubman Gill with his 47 balls 40. Prasidh Krishna took the only wicket for 22 runs in 3 overs.
MI have climbed to the top of the points table, which means they would meat Chennai Super Kings on May 7th at Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai for the first qualifier match. MI looks determined to defeat archrivals CSK to reach directly to the finals. With Pandya brothers, de Kock, Malinga, Rohit Sharma, Pollard, it looks fairly possible.
KKR certainly would have expected a better closure with the contributors like Russell, Karthik, Lynn and Narine, but their journey of IPL 2019 ended shockingly after losing the match to MI. KKR have won 6 out of their 14 matches and lost the playoffs ticket to SRH due to a lower net run rate.
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